Some of that money will likely be restored by lawmakers keen on finding money to send back to their home states.
The budget eliminates $56 million in programs, including grants to monitor water quality at beaches, reduce cancer-causing radon indoors, and clean up emissions from diesel engines.
The EPA’s budget figures exclude an additional $14 million, the agency’s share of Obama’s request for an extra $55 billion above a December budget agreement. That money is slated for helping communities prepare for impending climate changes: $10 million will be spent on protecting coastal wetlands and $4 million will support urban forests.
Agency: Health and Human Services
Discretionary spending: $73.7 billion
Percentage change from 2014: 7.6 percent decrease
Highlights: Obama’s proposed health care budget supports the rollout of the president’s health care law and lays the groundwork for next year’s open enrollment season, when the administration hopes to have worked out all the bugs in the new insurance system. Fees from insurers will provide a new stream of revenue for online markets that cater to people who don’t have access to health care on the job. The budget includes $25 million over two years to monitor and prevent fraud in the insurance exchanges.
Monday’s budget documents provided little detail on Medicare and Medicaid, the entitlement programs that account for the vast majority of HHS spending. Those specifics will be released later. However, Obama’s plan calls for overall cuts of $402 billion over ten years projected spending on the two giant health care programs. Most of that would come from Medicare. The budget also supports congressional efforts to change the way Medicare pays doctors, emphasizing improved quality. For Medicaid, the budget proposes a one-year extension of higher payments for primary care practitioners.
The Medicare cuts are expected to be heavy on recycled and updated versions of previous proposals. They include higher premiums on affluent beneficiaries for outpatient care and prescription drug coverage, and a raft of changes that would squeeze service providers.
Agency: Homeland Security
Discretionary spending: $38.2 billion
Percentage change from 2014: 2.8 percent decrease
Highlights: Obama’s proposed homeland security budget would provide money to hire 2,000 new Customs and Border Protection officers to work at the country’s ports of entry. The budget also proposes another 2,000 officers whose positions would be funded by user fees. Lawmakers and others have repeatedly complained to the Homeland Security Department that long waits at borders and airports hinders both business and tourism and have repeatedly asked for more border officers.